Belfast Telegraph

Man critically ill in Bangkok flat after hospital kicks him out

A west Belfast man who travelled to Thailand to visit his son in March remains ‘gravely ill’ his son told the Andersonstown News, after a blood clot on his brain was left untreated because the man and his family could not foot an £8,500 bill for a blood transfusion.

Francis McDonald, 56 failed to take out travel insurance before boarding the long haul flight to Bangkok, on which it is believed the onset of the blood clot took place.

The man who suffers from blood disorder, haemochromatosis was treated initially at a cost of £4,500 but doctors failed to find a solution.Instead they told Mr McDonald’s son, Frankie that ‘their work was done’ because the family could not provide funding for further treatment.

Mr McDonald’s other son, Kevin who resides in west Belfast told the Andersonstown News: “They did a CT scan and it showed blood around his brain so they were giving him medication and they operated on him.

“Unfortunately my daddy didn’t get travel insurance so the bills were mounting ludicrously. They were charging for tablets, soap and even water.

“They asked us for £4,500 which we as a family gathered and paid, then they asked for another £8,500 which we simply don’t have.

”Mr McDonald’s son Frankie who lives in Bangkok has now been forced to care for his ill father in his small flat after having to carry him out of Kasemrad hospital where doctors refused to care for him.

“Frankie had to take daddy out of the hospital, they asked for a wheelchair but were refused and Frankie and his two friends had to carry my daddy up into his apartment,” continued Kevin.

The McDonald family are now desperately seeking help and support from friends to raise £8,500 that will allow their father to receive a vital transfusion of blood platelets that would allow him to fly home to receive the appropriate medical care here.

In spite of their efforts, the McDonald family have not received any support from the Irish Consulate.

“We tried getting in touch with the Irish Consulate in Thailand for help because we don’t know what else to do, but we were told it was a personal matter,” added Kevin.

West Belfast MP Paul Maskey is trying to contact the Consulate for a ‘positive resolution’.

Meanwhile the McDonald family are organising fundraising events at two GAC clubs.

Kevin added: “I’m angry and upset. It’s so distressing for our family. My brother is trying to look after him, force feed him, clean him and wash him in a small apartment. It’s just unreal that this is happening.”

Mr McDonald remains in and out of consciousness and spoke once to his son Kevin via Skype. “Son, come and get me,” he said.

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